CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – We’ve been talking about the many heroes during this pandemic: doctors, nurses, first responders, truck drivers and grocery store employees. While many people have lost their jobs, some grocery stores are now hiring and rewarding their workers.
But people are frustrated. Caleb Vance has been trying to get in contact with West Virginia’s unemployment office for two weeks. He says, “It took me forever to get signed up and now I’m trying to get direct deposit set up so I don’t know how I’ll get the money.”
But filing for unemployment hasn’t been an easy task in the Mountain State. With doors locked, phone lines busy and a computer system overwhelmed with more than 60,000 new claims in just one week – many people feel like they have reached a dead-end.
Vance adds, “I wish the place would open, they could just let a couple people in so you can talk to them and actually get something done.”
But some places are getting stuff done.
Kroger Mid-Atlantic is looking to hire. Their Corporate Affairs Manager, Allison McGee says, “in West Virginia, we do have approximately 600 openings and these are part-time and full-time positions across every department in our store and they are permanent positions.”
McGee is encouraging anyone who has lost their job or is out of work to apply, “I know right now that many individuals have lost their jobs in hard-hit industries like restaurants and hospitality so we really welcome those people to come apply with us at Kroger.”
In addition, the company announced Wednesday it’s giving a $2 an hour “hero bonus” for existing employees who worked between March 29th and April 18th.
As for unemployment claims – the only advice we can to give to you is – just keep trying.